… on pondering along with an understudy

The Understudy

Meet The Understudy – the at-the-ready stand in for the Sam’s now-crunched automotive star (unable to go on). This is her, prior to meeting her new human way down yonder in New Orleans.

Now-Crunched, Unable to go on.

I should note here that we have some gender fluidity with The Understudy. I see a ‘her’, Sam sees a ‘him’. So far The Understudy has not chosen a pronoun so you’ll need to bear with us… and since I am writing this, and have all the power (mwahahaha!), I win here.

In what is probably not really a miracle, the insurance companies – theirs and ours – were great after Sam’s accident. I think we each allowed fear to wrap his prickly blanket around us – because sometimes the pervasive negative creeps in and makes us worry. The films in our heads portrayed insurance companies as inhuman, accident victims lying to take advantage of the system, police being biased or unhelpful, and the truth not winning the day.

But Fear was given no satisfaction this time. The insurance professionals were quite human, the woman who ran the red light didn’t tell the same story as Sam did, but the experts determined that Sam’s version fit the evidence, and Sam said the officer who came to the scene was very nice and professional and helpful. He also said the EMS workers were not only capable, but concerned and caring.

So, over the course of two weeks, details were sorted and statements taken and determinations made and amounts proposed and agreed upon and we were able to buy the very same model car, in another color acceptable to Sam (which is preferably not colorful. Black preferred, dark grey next, in a pinch, silver (So, yes, I did consider an orange one for a second… because I’m that type of mother. But I opted to fight my sick sense of humor).

Anyway, we could buy the car for the amount the insurance was paying out. And so we said, “Deal!”

And then there was the whole car getting to him thing that needed to happen.

Did I mention we are a little busy?

Okay, so we have been getting the house ready to put it on the market… which was going to be a sort of slow ‘under the radar’ thing for a while, but then our way-more-experienced Realtor Jen said we needed to expose it for maximum interest and she is very bullish on it selling quickly so that has freaked us out a bit.

And then there is the getting Maine ready to move to full-time thing, which it kind of is except it is one house and we have two houses worth of stuff which wouldn’t necessarily be an issue because I have a barn… but I need the barn for a certain wedding.

So I have exactly zero places to store the stuff.

I know, I know. First world problems. But it’s a bit stressful and impacts not only me and John, but Granny and also nearly-adulting and adulting kids (and two German ShepHerds – one royal, one loopy).

Again, these are not earth shattering circumstances. But I don’t think it’s healthy to dismiss life’s stressors, just because they are not life-threatening or heart-breaking.

Perspective is a very good thing, but ought not be employed to nuke our emotions. Try to avoid them, and they come back with reinforcements to muck with us. I know this to be true.

So I’ve found myself in this sort of hyperdrive-y headspace…

Sam’s alive. Thank Gawd. Car’s crunched. He needs a car for work. Need dollars for said car. Insurance seems to be moving forward. How does he get to work in the mean time. Mac needs to get her dress seamstress-ed. Flowers need to be ordered. Did I put a deposit on the tent. Can Granny get up and down that step to the barn. It might be too high. I need to check that. What price is the right price to put the house on the market. There are nice people who want it. I want to give them one last chance before we put it on the market. Have to go get Gabe from North Carolina in May. What date. How many days will that take. No time. No time. I have to launch the new blog version. Did I approve the final text. Was Marshal’s photo put in on that page. I still can’t read my stats. Gotta work on that. How many times does Mac need to come back from Seattle to hem things and taste things and stuff. When will that be. How many showings of the house will we have each week. Where will we go with the dogs. How about Granny if she doesn’t want to come with us during the showings…’ 

And then…

Oh! An unplanned trip to New Orleans? A three day car ride down?

And you would think I’d be all – uh. No. Not me, I have too much going on. But you would be WRONG! I was all…




So here I am, sitting in a room that a very nice lady at the front desk upgraded me into. I’m overlooking the French Quarter and… well, hang on and look…

The Mississippi is just out of the frame, to the right, but more importantly so is Cafe Du Monde… where they make those pillows from heaven called beignets.. and where I will walk after I finish writing!

So, in and amongst all the craziness, I spent three days on the road. About 7 hours to a stop in Pennsylvania was followed by another 8 to Knoxville, Tennessee and then about 9 to New Orleans yesterday.

They were exactly what the universe-affiliated doctor ordered.

I listened to books on tape, hung out in my own head… and took some deep breaths.

I’ll be here today and tomorrow before flying back super-duper early on Thursday morning.


My camera.


And also Sam and Real Life Princess Avery* (and I get to meet her parents).

Sometimes taking the time we don’t have to realize we have more time than we need for the stuff that truly matters?


 As always, come on over to Just Ponderin’s Facebook page to comment <3 

*After a childhood of Disney movies and visits to Disney World and his major love of all things Disney, Sam is actually dating a real life Disney Princess… (I know. I totally know her!)

Real Disney Princess.